The Organic Farming Initiative
In 2006, JRF launched its organic farming initiative under the directives of Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah. The Initiative aims to strengthen the agricultural sector in Jordan, and its main objective is to develop a new and more sustainable approach for agriculture by promoting organic farming in the Kingdom. This endeavor yields several positive outcomes, such as the production of healthy food, the protection of Jordan’s biodiversity, soil structure and microorganisms, and a notable improvement in the economic livelihoods of famers who can sell organic produce at higher prices.
JRF worked closely with relevant stakeholders and institutions to formulate organic farming regulations and develop the most suitable mechanisms to expand this sector in Jordan. Two certification bodies were identified: the Jordan Institute for Standards and Metrology (JISM) and the Royal Scientific Society (RSS).
At the start of 2006, JRF secured funding from the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation through RESCATE to establish a legal framework for organic farming in Jordan, which was endorsed and issued by the Prime Ministry in 2011.
JRF also secured funding from the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation (MoPIC) in 2008 under the “Conservation of Medicinal and Herbal Plants Project” to promote and support implementing organic medicinal and herbal plant farming in Wadi Araba. JRF selected Wadi Araba as the target area for this project because of its climate and unpolluted soil, which is ideal for organic farming. Consequently, 25 dunums were cultivated with organic crops, and an organic farming certificate was awarded to the Qaa’ Al-Saideen Cooperative in Wadi Araba, for complying with requirements, making it the first co-op in Jordan to obtain this certification.
JRF continued in its efforts to implement another model to showcase its organic farming initiative. For this purpose, the Foundation secured funding from the Islamic Bank to implement the “Capacity Building for Small Farmers on Organic Farming in Mudawara Project.” The Project aims to build the capacities of small farmers in Mudawara to enable them to produce organic seasonal and non-seasonal vegetables that will contribute to improving their socio-economic status. Under the Project, 50 dunums were cultivated with organic crops, and an organic farming certificate was awarded to the Al Durra Al Khadra’ Cooperative.